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Art Deco Cameras

Kodak Six-20 'Brownie' B

Specification


Kodak No.2 Beau Brownie
Kodak Six-20 'Brownie' B
Manufacturer: Kodak
Produced: 1937-1941
Classification:Medium Format
Body Type:Box
Film Type:620
Film Width:62mm
Image Size:2¼ x 3¼ in
Lens Type:Doublet
Focus Type:Fixed + portrait & group
Focal Length:100mm
Focus Range:8ft to inf, portrait 3ft - 8ft.
Aperture Type :Multihole
Aperture :f/11, f/16, f/22
Shutter Type:Rotary
Shutter Speeds:B,I(1/30 sec)
Size (w x h x d):85 x 107 x 110 mm
Weight:560g

Art Deco Credentials

star star star star
Significant: Pronounced and self evident

Description

The Kodak Six-20 'Brownie' B is a box-type camera from the 1930s with an Art Deco facade. The Model B follows an original version from 1934 which had a more rounded case and opened in two halves.

There is a shutter release and a small B-I shutter selector on the side. On the early model the B-I shutter selector was around the lens. The other controls are arranged around the lens with two levers giving a choice of three distances and three apertures - labelled 'f11', '16' and '22 (B Only) See Manual'. Of course, with modern films, the manual isn't particularly useful in terms of exposure. f/22 can be used on a sunny day using instant mode without problem.

How to Use

This camera takes 620 film which is still available from selected photographic outlets. Although the actual film is the same as 120 film, the spools are different. The 620 spools are slightly shorter and have a smaller diameter. Do not use 120 film in this camera because it will jam and may snap. It is possible to cut down a spool of 120 film to fit or to re-spool some 120 film onto 620 spools in a darkroom or changing bag.

As the shutter speed is only 1/30s, it is advisable to use a tripod to get clear shake free images. However, holding it against a wall or other solid object would work as well. For quick snapshots, hold it firmly against your body.

If you don't want to bother with an exposure meter, follow the guide shown. It is based on the 'Sunny 16' rule. Film is so forgiving and will produce acceptable results even when overexposed by 2 or 3 stops or underexposed by 1 stop.

The tables shown assumes the shutter speed is about 1/30s. If you are not sure about the light level, err on the side of overexposure - i.e. assume the lower light level.

The tables also assume that the sun is at least 30 degrees above the horizon - that's 10am - 5pm on a summers day in the UK.

Using ISO 100 film - shutter speed 1/30s

Weather ConditionsShadow DetailApertureExposure
Sunny
Snow/Sand
Dark
with sharp edges
f/22+2 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
SunnyDistinctf/22+1 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
Slight OvercastSoft around edgesf/22Good
OvercastBarely visiblef/16Good
Heavy OvercastNonef/11Good
Open Shade
/Sunset
Nonef/11-1 Stop
Underexposed
Acceptable

Images from this camera

Images using re-spooled Fuji Neopan Acros 120 ISO 100 on to 620 spools

Peterston Church
Cardiff Castle
Daffodils at St. Fagans
Gwalia Shop
Canal Bridge